FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
October 5, 2017
(Nashville, TN)- A Nashville man will spend the rest of his life in prison for the brutal murder of his girlfriend’s three-year-old son. Davidson County Criminal Court Judge Cheryl Blackburn sentenced Donald Lee Harris, 35, to life plus 75 years in prison on Wednesday. Harris was found guilty in June of murder, aggravated child abuse and aggravated child neglect. The three-year-old victim had been severely beaten with belts, treated with exceptional cruelty, and was especially vulnerable due to his physical and mental disabilities.
Assistant DA Pam Anderson said even while the child was dying, he was not taken to the hospital. She called Harris a dangerous offender who had no regard for human life. “This was not a one-time isolated event, this was ongoing, sustained torture. There is no more dangerous offender than one that would cause harm to a child, Anderson said.”
The boy’s mother, Shantonio Hunter, pled guilty in September to second degree murder and was sentenced to 28 years in prison.
Click here for the official release…
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
June 29, 2017
(Nashville, TN)—It was a case both the prosecution and the defense admitted was difficult for jurors to hear. After listening to three days of testimony in the child rape case against Jeremy Ledbetter, a Davidson County jury took less than an hour to find the Nashville man guilty on all counts. Prosecutors described the case, which included testimony about the sexual abuse of children and animals, one of the most disturbing and appalling cases they had seen. The young victim testified that the rape and abuse by Ledbetter occurred from the time he was 10 until 12-years-old.
Ledbetter, 29, was convicted on the following charges:
• Rape of a Child–2 counts
• Aggravated Sexual Battery/Victim Under 13-two counts
• Induce Sexual Activity by a Minor-two counts
• Display Sexual Acts to a Minor Under 13-one count
Assistant District Attorney Chad Butler said the guilty verdict gave the victim the justice he deserved and helped to give back a piece of his childhood. “All victims of child sexual abuse who testify in front of their abusers are brave to do so. The young victim in this case was particularly courageous for standing up and testifying about the type of humiliating abuse he suffered at the hands of Jeremy Ledbetter,” Butler said.
Ledbetter faces up to 134 years in prison when he is sentenced on August 18.
June 05, 2015 – (Nashville, TN) – Burlison Convicted
A Davidson County jury has returned guilty verdicts in the child rape and abuse trial of a former Hermitage babysitter. Jurors heard three days of testimony in the case led by Assistant District Attorneys Alyssa Hennig and Pam Anderson. Following less than two hours of deliberation on Thursday, Becky Burlison, 42, was found guilty on two counts of Aggravated Rape of a Child and one count each of Aggravated Child Abuse and Aggravated Child Neglect.
Burlison was arrested by Metro Nashville Police in April, 2012 after the two-year-old boy she had been babysitting suffered severe injuries when Burlison inserted a brush handle into the child’s rectum. The handle broke and became lodged inside the little boy’s body.
Assistant D.A. Alyssa Henning said the babysitter had been a trusted family friend. “The family is pleased with the jury’s verdict and understand that while this doesn’t change what happened to their son it does prevent her from hurting anyone else’s child,” General Hennig said.
Assistant D.A. Pam Anderson said the case demonstrates the commitment by the District Attorney’s Office to protect vulnerable victims. “We will not tolerate this type of behavior from anyone toward children in our community,” General Anderson said.
Becky Burlison faces a minimum forty-years in prison when she is sentenced on July 10.
Click here to view the Official Release
(Nashville, TN) – Human Trafficking Unit
“The ultimate form of depravity is when a person turns a little girl into a sex slave,” District Attorney Glenn Funk said in announcing the formation of a human trafficking unit inside the DA’s Office. Four Assistant District Attorneys have been assigned to the unit and will ensure full prosecution of human sex trafficking cases in Nashville. The move comes as the TBI creates the Middle Tennessee Human Trafficking Task Force to bring greater attention to the issue. The task force, which will include the DA’s Office, End Slavery Tennessee and several local law enforcement agencies, is currently working to secure a federal grant to assist in prosecution of offenders and services for victims.
View the Official Release
May 07, 2015 – (WZTV) – Disarming Domestic Abusers
The Davidson County District Attorney’s office confiscated a handgun from a convicted abuser, one of the first cases of its kind, the department said Wednesday.
Read More at: http://www.fox17.com/news/features/top-stories/stories/Disarming-Domestic-Abusers—Eric-Alvarez-128118.shtml
May 06, 2015 – (WKRN) – Domestic Violence Prosecution Support
Numbers released this week show more than half of all crimes in Tennessee are related to domestic violence.
To curb that trend, Davidson County District Attorney General Glenn Funk implemented a plan called the Domestic Violence Prosecution Support.
May 05, 2015 – (Nashville) – DA’s Office Receives Leadership Award for Diversity
The DA’s Office is honored to receive the 2015 Leadership Award for Diversity from the Nashville Bar Association (NBA). District Attorney Funk accepted the award during the NBA’s Annual Law Day luncheon on May 1, 2015. The award was given to the DA’s Office in recognition of its contributions to enhance diversity and professional success. District Attorney Funk has made diversity a priority by appointing more African-American and Latino lawyers and executive staff to key positions in his administration.
May 04, 2015 – (Nashville) – Jones, Mason and Martin Appointments
District Attorney Glenn Funk has announced three new appointments to the Office of the District Attorney, effective May 1, 2015. Attorneys Robert Jones, Leticia Mason and Investigator Randy Martin were sworn in Friday morning by Judge Steve Dozier.
Robert Jones is a veteran trial attorney and previously served as Shelby County’s Chief Public Defender. Attorney Jones has more than 35 years legal experience and is a graduate of Memphis State University School of Law. As an Assistant District Attorney in Nashville, he will oversee prosecution of child abuse cases.
Attorney Leticia Mason’s private practice specialized in immigration and civil law. She joins the District Attorney’s Office after having worked as a Spanish court interpreter for Davidson County Criminal Court and a staff attorney for the Mexican government. She is a graduate of Nashville School of Law.
Investigator Randy Martin retired from the Metro Nashville Police Department in 2014 after 30 years as a police detective. He joins the DA’s Investigations Unit to assist in preparing cases for prosecution.
“I am pleased to have this group of professionals join our office,” District Attorney Funk said. “Their combination of experience and commitment to public safety will ensure our office continues to focus on protecting vulnerable victims.”
View the Official Release
April 09, 2015 – (Nashville) – Boykin Sentencing
Judge Randall Wyatt has sentenced a former TSA agent to six months in jail for secretly videotaping a co-worker inside an airport restroom. Daniel Boykin, 33, was ordered to serve six-months in jail and five-and-a-half years on community corrections after pleading guilty to unlawful photography, aggravated burglary and violation of the computer act. Assistant District Attorney Amy Hunter, who called the case one of the most invasive and offensive crimes she’s prosecuted, said she is pleased with the judge’s ruling.
View the Official Release